Nigeria: Strict statism of Buharinomics has cost for ordinary people

In depth
This article is part of the dossier: Nigeria: What business needs

By Temitayo Lawal
Posted on Wednesday, 19 October 2022 18:26, updated on Wednesday, 23 November 2022 12:25

Nigeria's President Muhammadu Buhari in Belgium ,February 18, 2022. REUTERS/Johanna Geron/Pool

President Muhammadu Buhari’s strict statist policies have boosted Nigeria's domestic food production and reduced imports, but at what cost to ordinary people?

What have two terms of ’Buharinomics’ brought to Nigeria? The government of Buhari, in office since 2015, has based much of its economic policy on state interventions in the market; be it in rice production, infrastructure or access to foreign exchange. It has delivered mixed results.

The government says its plan for national self-sufficiency in rice production – closing the country’s land borders to fight smuggling and blocking US dollar access for its import – is yielding positive results. In January, Buhari unveiled a pyramid made up of 1.2 million bags of rice in the country’s capital, Abuja, declaring that Nigeria had doubled its paddy rice production to 9m tonnes per annum since 2015.

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